Takin’ Care of Business 2-23-2023

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Written by Theresa-Marie Wilson

Theresa-Maria Wilson has been a journalist covering the North Coast and South County area for over 20 years. She is also the founder of Cat Noir CC and is currently working on a novel.

February 23, 2023

Nominations Wanted for Community Awards

The Morro Bay Chamber of Commerce wants help honoring the best of 2022. 

“We are calling on all members of the community to nominate exceptional individuals for consideration in the following categories,” chamber officials said in a newsletter. 

Nominations must be received by Monday, March 6 for consideration. Both third party and self-nominations are accepted and welcomed. Nominees must not have received the award previously.

Categories include:
• Business of the Year 
• Non Profit of the Year
• Citizen of the Year
• Living Treasure

Download nomination forms then print, scan and email to info@morrochamber.org or print then mail/drop your completed nomination form to: 
Morro Bay Chamber
Attn: Community Awards
695 Harbor Street
Morro Bay, CA 93442

Local Recognized in List of Top CEOs 

A Los Osos resident made the list of top CEOs of rural hospitals 

Becker’s Healthcare named Rena Salamacha as one of the “80 Rural Hospital CEOs to Know.” The list highlights top executives from rural hospitals across the nation.

“The executives featured on this list have put their heart and soul into ensuring their communities have access to the best healthcare services possible,” said a news release. “While rural hospitals across the country have faced closure in recent years, these leaders have developed a model for not only surviving, but thriving.”

Salamacha, a los Osos resident since 2007, is the CEO of MEE Memorial in King City. She is responsible for leading a team of executives and care providers charged with ensuring her facility provides high-quality healthcare services to its local community. 

After taking over as CEO in early 2019, Salamacha went into the COVID-19 pandemic facing a unique challenge and demonstrated her ability to bring various groups together and kept up with round-the-clock healthcare delivery. She also expanded services, campus locations and led her organization-wide revitalization of the system’s business functions, said Becker’s, a magazine for hospital business, news, and analysis for hospital healthcare system executives.

“Rural hospitals are critical to the success of the U.S. healthcare system to expand access to care in remote areas,” said Brendan Talian, Becker’s staff writer. “CEOs at the helm of these important community institutions have many responsibilities to make sure their hospitals thrive.” 

To review the other 79 CEOs, go to beckershospitalreview.com.

Bill to Fund Military Communities Infrastructure 

Assemblymember Dawn Addis (D-Morro Bay) introduced the Stronger Defense Communities Act, Assembly Bill 444, a bipartisan bill to create a way for California to partner with the federal government to fund critical infrastructure in state communities that host military bases. 

“California is home to thousands of military families who not only sacrifice for the betterment of our country, but also provide significant economic contributions to our state,” Addis said in a news release. “This bill helps California’s defense communities by supporting local efforts to access federal funds for water, road and other improvements that benefit military families and the communities where they live.” 

Currently, California defense communities can apply for federal infrastructure grants through the Defense Community Infrastructure Pilot (DCIP) program, a federal program that funds military-related infrastructure improvements. While the DCIP is an important tool, communities are often not able to meet the matching requirements that many of the grants require.

AB 444 would provide state assistance to these communities, providing funding to match the grant requirements under the DCIP. The bill would also support these communities in identifying potential DCIP projects through other grants. Communities often need assistance in identifying, planning, and implementing these projects when they cannot afford to do so with local funds. 

The legislation is pending committee referral in the State Assembly. Senator Rosilicie Ochoa Bogh (R-Yucaipa) is the principal coauthor of the bill.

Dine out to Help Boys and Girls Clubs

Save money and help a nonprofit. 

Dining for Charities continues their support of Boys & Girls Clubs. Visit the Dining for Charities website at http://bit.ly/3YAVo5B and order gift cards to local restaurants at a deep discount. Through the month of February, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Mid Central Coast receives 15% from every card sold! Enjoy great meals, support local businesses, and raise money. 

There are a slew of local restaurants to chose from including Beach Burgers in Morro Bay, Central Coast Pizza in Los Osos, The Great American Fish Company in Morro Bay and more. 

Boys & Girls Clubs of Mid Central Coast provides a place where kids can go after school and during the summer to grow beyond the classroom. Clubs support all youth and teens – of every race, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, ability, socio-economic status, and religion – in reaching their full potential. 

Spokes Meeting

Spokes for Nonprofits introduces an opportunity for nonprofit organizations in the same sector to network and discuss common challenges with  “Mission-alike” Roundtables, which are held via zoom once a month, focusing on a different sector each month.

Roundtables will focus on youth programs on March 29, environmental quality, protection and beautification on April 26, housing focused services on May 31 and animal related services on June 21.

A hallmark feature of the roundtables is a commitment to confidentiality to encourage mutual support and a candid exchange of ideas. Through a facilitated discussion participants will have the opportunity to share good news and/or something that’s “keeping them up at night.” They may also offer a “spotlight topic” for discussion during the course of the 75-minute session. Roundtables are free to all participants. 

To register, visit the Spokes Event Calendar at http://bit.ly/3Km9hAt.

Celebrate Downtown SLO Improvements

If you shop, work or play in Downtown SLO, celebrate the improvements in the area by attending a ribbon cutting celebration on Tuesday, February 28 at 2 p.m. in the Downtown Center Plaza at 890 Marsh Street.  The event is sponsored by the City of San Luis Obispo.

The downtown complete street improvements included new bike lanes, wider sidewalks, upgraded pedestrian crossings, and much more. The project was among several included in the SLO in Motion this past year, a multimillion-dollar investment San Luis Obispo that aims to improve mobility, accessibility, and safety for all modes of transportation. 

Mayor Erica A. Stewart and members of the City Council will join community leaders and project stakeholders in cutting the ribbon and celebrating this major Capital Improvement Project for the City.  Festivities includie refreshments and an informational booth showcasing the project’s features and benefits. 

“We are excited to unveil these much-anticipated improvements and celebrate their completion with our community,” said Jennifer Rice, project manager. “SLO in Motion is a testament to our commitment to providing safe and accessible transportation options for all.” 

For more information, go to the City of San Luis Obispo’s website at www.slocity.org/SLOinMotion.  

Lunch with the League

Check out the League of Women Voters “Lunch with the League Zoom event on Wednesday, March 8 starting at noon. 

The San Luis Obispo Council of Governments

(SLOCOG) Planning Director James Worthley presents “A Vision for Growth: The 2023 SLO County Regional Transportation Plan.” The plan will identify transportation needs, discuss strategies and resources, and describe a vision for growth and development in the county through 2045.

This Zoom event is free to the public, but registration is required at http://bit.ly/3k6UtuH. 

Kim Murry, co-chairperson of the LWV SLOCO Natural Resources Committee moderates the webinar.

Participants will be able to submit questions. For more information, contact the League at naturalresources@lwvslo.org or call 805-242-6990.

Are you or a neighbor Taking Care of Business? Submit your awesome local efforts for publication here. Is your business supporting our community? Maybe you’re launching a new business, or you’re making updates to your current business model, or re-opening. Or perhaps you have a job opportunity, or have been doing some volunteer work, or are collaborating with another business or a non-profit. Or maybe you know someone who is. Fill out our online form at EsteroBayNews.com.

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